While end-of-October festivities bring excitement to children and adults alike, Halloween celebrations pose unique dangers. Trick-or-treating, attending Halloween parties, and even wearing costumes can all be risky without proper safety precautions.
To stay safe and have fun this Halloween, use the following guide to recognize and avoid common Halloween-related injuries and illness:
Three Common Halloween Hazards
Children who trick-or-treat may encounter a whole variety of unfamiliar candies and treats. If you know your child has an allergy, be sure to check their candy for treats that contain peanuts, milk, soy, or other common allergens. Better yet, accompany your child to your neighborhood doorways, and ask about ingredients before accepting any candy. If a youngster has severe allergies, this technique is the best way to ensure she does not come into contact with the substance.
If a child does have a mild or moderate reaction, take her to urgent care. If you suspect anaphylaxis, administer epinephrine and call 911 for emergency help.
2. Drunk Drivers
Unfortunately, a rise in parties serving alcohol around Halloween is correlated with a rise in alcohol-related car accidents. Stay safe on the roads while traveling to festivities by always wearing seat belts, and monitoring other drivers' behaviors. If you notice erratic driving, call 911 to report a suspected drunk driver. Look out for fellow party goers to make sure no one gets behind the wheel unless they are sober.
Finally, when out trick-or-treating, keep children on sidewalks and ensure that costumes include reflective materials to boost after-dark visibility near roadways.
3. Trips and Falls
The third common cause of Halloween injuries is trips and falls that occur during after-dark shenanigans. Make sure all costumes do not prohibit normal walking motions, especially for toddlers and young children. Avoid heels or unsteady shoes while walking sidewalks-- more than 80% of ankle sprains are a result of inversion, or inward rolling, of the ankle, and this type of sprain is commonly caused by improper footwear.
Another way to prevent trip-related injuries is to keep lights or glow sticks with you while traveling in dark areas.
While out with children, or our partying with friends, watch your step and indulge carefully so that you can greet November without a trip to urgent care. Happy Halloween!